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Monday, March 17, 2014

Chihuahuan Desert Spring

Torrey Yucca in bloom
Despite ongoing drought in America's desert Southwest, the hearty plants of the Chihuahuan Desert have begun the process of reproduction.  Many Torrey Yuccas have begun to blossom, as have the abundant Hedgehog Cacti that populate this high desert (1,970 to 5500 feet).  The Chihuahuan Desert is the second largest desert in North America and the third largest in the Western Hemisphere. 
In an arroyo west of Tortugas (Tortoise) Mountain

Tortugas Mountain (left) and the Organ Mountains
A day at the beach?  (Sandy arroyo bottom)

The flower stalk of a Torrey Yucca

Native Americans (like the Apache tribes) ate the Yucca flowers

The flowers are sweet and can be added to salads

Yuccas are pollinated by the Yucca Moth

Flowers of the Claret Cup Hedgehog Cactus--loved by hummingbirds

1 comment:

Dr. K said...

Even though I've spent most of my life in the desert, I'm still amazed at the number of plants that blossom in such dry conditions.

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